After finishing the season a perfect 27-0, Amador Valley High’s softball team has earned a mythical national championship by MaxPreps.com.
Led by a stellar senior class, the Dons won the North Coast Section Division I title for the second time in four years. Their national recognition grew after winning the prestigious Michelle Carew Classic against some of Southern California’s top teams in early April.
Amador Valley beat out unbeaten North Carolina state champion Alexander Central for the top national ranking.
Dons pitcher Johanna Grauer has also been piling up the awards. Besides being a finalist for MaxPrep.com’s national player of the year, she was recently named Ms. Softball state player of the year by Cal-Hi Sports. Grauer is just the second East Bay player to be named Ms. Softball, joining Freedom’s Amanda Williams (2006).
Our All-East Bay softball selections will be published in tomorrow’s paper. Will Amador Valley have a few more honors to add?
Nkosi Djehuti-Mes, a senior outfielder at Bishop O’Dowd High this past season, signed a letter-of-intent today to play baseball at Southern University.
The 6-foot-2, 230-pound Djehuti-Mes said that Southern head coach Roger Cador was a deciding factor for him.
“He welcomed me … and he made it feel like I would be at home,” Djehuti-Mes said.
Djehuti-Mes took an official visit to the Baton Rouge campus this spring and noticed a big difference between there and Oakland, where he has lived his whole life.
“The weather was a whole lot different,” he said. “It was humid, over-cloudy, 90-degrees … sticky.”
But he also noticed a friendly atmosphere there.
“They would welcome you, even though they didn’t know you,” he said.
Djehuti-Mes said that he was also recruited by Oregon, Fresno State, Indiana and North Carolina A & T, among other universities.
This past season, Djehuti-Mes batted .212, but showed power with one home run, eight RBIs, four doubles and 13 runs scored.
“It was a rough season. I didn’t do how I wanted to do,” said Djehuti-Mes. But he enjoyed the team experience. “It was definitely a season to remember. Everybody got along,” he said. “It was the definition of a tight-knit group.”
Kahlil McKenzie announced Monday night that he’s planning to transfer from De La Salle and enroll at Clayton Valley Charter for his senior year.
McKenzie couldn’t be reached for comment but posted to his Twitter account: “Transferring from De La Salle going to Clayton Valley Charter family decision not answering any questions about it but I’m a Ugly Eagle.”
De La Salle football coach Justin Alumbaugh confirmed that McKenzie, a 6-foot-4, 330 pound defensive tackle, is leaving the school.
“Kahlil has withdrawn from De La Salle,” Alumbaugh said. “And I do mean this — Kahlil is a really good kid and will have a great future. We wish him the best.”
The five-star recruit is the son of Oakland Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie and has offers from colleges from across the country. He recently said he has narrowed down his college decision to Tennessee or Arizona and will announce his pick at The Opening, a prestigious Nike football camp, on July 10.
McKenzie played only one season for De La Salle, registering 74 tackles and a team-high 12 sacks after moving to the Bay Area from Wisconsin before his junior year.
Clayton Valley Charter coach Tim Murphy couldn’t be reached for comment.
The Eagles have been one of the top Division II schools in the North Coast Section since Murphy took over before the 2012 season.
It’s not often that a two-time Bay Area News Group East Bay coach of the year is available to take over your program, but that was exactly the case for the Alhambra boys soccer team.
With an unbeaten season, Amador Valley completes a perfect run as our No. 1 ranked East Bay team.
|1. Amador Valley (5)
|5. James Logan
|8. San Ramon Valley
|11. Newark Memorial
|12. Castro Valley
|13. Redwood Christian
|t15. Dougherty Valley
Also receiving votes: Freedom (13-6-2, 2 votes), California (7-14, 1). The East Bay Softball Poll is voted on by the prep sports staff of Bay Area News Group East Bay.
Heritage High’s Frank Kurtz has withdrawn from this weekend’s CIF state track and field championships due to a knee injury, Heritage coach Kevin Bain texted to the Bay Area News Group tonight.
Kurtz, who won the boys 400 meter title last Saturday at the North Coast Section Meet of Champions, told the Bay Area News Group after his victory that he had kind of tweaked his right knee two days earlier. “I couldn’t go out fast, do anything explosive off this knee,” he said.
But Kurtz was dominant in the 400 final Saturday, winning by .42 with a time of 47.66 seconds. The Stanford-bound senior has the seventh-fastest time in the state this season (47.35) according to PrepCalTrack.com. Last year, Kurtz placed fourth in the 400 final at the CIF state championships
“Frank decided that his injury is preventing him from running 100 percent and feels that he cannot win it going 70 percent like last weekend,” Bain texted. “It is a soft tissue strain in the back of the knee that prevents him from accelerating.”
A pair of former Richmond High basketball stars are returning to their alma mater to help the Oilers basketball program.
Wendell McKines and Eli Holman are holding a charity basketball game on June 7 to benefit the Richmond High boys basketball team. Tickets are $5 for the 2 p.m. game between Team Holman and Team Wensday. The teams will be comprised of professional basketball players from overseas, including McKines and Holman.
McKines’ season in South Korea ended in March and he said that Holman’s season in Turkey “just ended,” McKines said.
“It will be an annual event,” said McKines about the game.
For more information, e-mail McKines at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Topped by an impressive nine members of the San Ramon Valley High girls soccer team, here is a list of Wolves heading to college athletics:
Shawn Hipol has been hired as St. Joseph Notre Dame’s new girls basketball coach, Pilots Athletic Director Chris Pondok confirmed today.
Hipol was the head coach at Skyline High for the past five seasons and guided the Titans to a pair of Oakland Athletic League regular-season titles in 2010 and 2014, and a co-title in 2012. His overall record at Skyline was 95-46 with a 40-10 mark in OAL regular-season play.
Monte Vista High honored its 23 college-bound athletes at a school ceremony on May 30. Continue Reading